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15 cute animals that could kill you

By: Bryan Nelson on Feb. 4, 2016, 12:50 p.m.
slow loris

Photo: Lionel Mauritson/Wikipedia

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Slow loris

This animal might look like a harmless, big-eyed baby ewok, but the slow loris is one of the only poisonous mammals in the world. Its subtle nature makes it popular in the illegal pet trade, but unknowing humans should stay clear of its toxin, which is released from the sides of its elbows. When threatened, the loris takes the toxin into its mouth and mixes it with saliva. The animal will also lick its hair to deter predators from attack. The toxin can cause death by anaphylactic shock.

With the animal's poisoned bite, hiss-like noises, sinuous moves, and even the way it defensively raises its arms above its head, Smithsonian wonders whether the loris might have evolved to mimic the cobra. Researchers also suggest that the slow loris's markings resemble those of the snake.